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Jess is the Business Relations manager at Ayur Botanicals and is taking a two-month holiday in Spain (and surrounds). Find out how Ayurveda is seeing her well in her travels here on the blog every fortnight.
I have been waiting for this Spain trip ever since I was 12 years old. I had just seen my first ever flamenco concert and absolutely fell in love. And now that I am here, I have realised the great benefits of following a dream. I am utterly blissed out (apart from the lack of sleep and tummy that doesn’t really understand what time it is!) and I feel very content in the knowledge that I have reached a goal.
The trip over to Barcelona felt like it went on for days…which it almost did. It was about creating a fine balance of stretching, hydrating and walking about to have trip that didn’t leave too big of a mark! (I highly recommend doing an Ayurvedic detox to learn about how to take care of your body. I felt the knowledge guide me through the eye-watering dryness of aeroplane air and the many hours of confined living!). About 1.5 days after my boyfriend and I left Australia we arrived at our accomodation. Our host spoke only a little bit of English, so my jet lagged brain had some work to do! But she is lovely, and we gestured our way through our conversations. She showed us all the good spots, and how to get to the gorgeous Parc Güell, which is a mere 15 minute walk from her house! Wonderful!
After a much needed shower, we crashed into bed, at 6:30pm on Thursday evening, and woke at 1am on Friday, a little bit confused and still tired. But I allowed my body to follow its intuition, and slept again until I woke at 5am, better rested and feeling ready to go. Another shower helped me realised the simple joy of cleaning and awakening the body in the morning; it felt nice to steam my body after 40 hours of cold, conditioned air.
We excitedly got ready and went out for our first day in Barcelona. We got wonderfully lost, and wandered back streets of Barcelona. We even sent some quite verbal and specific wishes into the universe, which were met by an answer in the form of a bubble tea shop and a shady library garden with orange trees we could sit under and calibrate our SIM cards.
There weren’t many major places visited Friday, but there was much to enjoy in the randomness of our walks, and our trust in fate to guide us; buskers in back alleys, pigeons perched everywhere, hawkers hollering for us to buy their wares, even a film shot on the beach on a very old film camera that made a clicking noise.
On our way home we stopped by the supermarket, which was a bit of a surprise; there was scarcity in the fresh fruit & veggie section. Thus we resorted to pasta and sauce for dinner, with greens on the side. We returned at 6pm, exhausted but happy and pulled ourselves to the kitchen to make dinner. A home cooked meal felt so nice to have after hours of plane food and some meals out. Dining with our host was an experience to remember. Surprisingly, we got through a conversation about The Spiral of life. How cyclic our lives are and how we always return to the same spot, but with new eyes, or a with a change in our lives., repeating this way up and up until…well. This reflection on life was actually quite comforting. My mother, Lesley, showed me this exact philosophy, and somehow I had found it in Barcelona!
Friday was a mega day; I carried a laptop, a book, a litre water bottle, and occasionally a DSLR camera in my backpack for the majority of the day, which made for a sore back. I did a towel roll after dinner, to stretch it out and instantly felt better. I thought of mum again, and thanked her for raising me to care about my body. And wished I had her book with me, so I could remember all the tricks I need to stay well. It’s not published yet, but is something to lookout for later this year!
Saturday was a little slower. Yanis and I were tired from our huge Friday, so we planned our sight seeing. Confidently catching the train into town, we came out of the metro greeted by Gaudi’s Casa Mila, a.k.a La Pedrera. It was beautiful. But stayed only a short while before moving onto the next house: La Casa Batlló. We payed the 21 euro entry, and soaked in Gaudi’s genius. It was incredible how he melded nature, practicality and aesthetics into an art style. Gorgeous door handles that fit perfectly in the hand, and windows that folded upwards, and always soft, coloured lighting that comforted you. I have incredible appreciation for his appreciation of nature, and felt calmer in the presence of such naturalistic architecture. After the houses we hired bikes, just around the corner from Arc de Triomf and rode around the eastern suburbs of Barcelona. It was a little bit scary, but very fun. We were very invigorated by the crisp air and movement, but our jellied legs couldn’t do much more after the ride, so we retired for the night, only after a short break for backgammon in the park, watching the many rollerbladers do jumps and swishes and fancy tricks.
I’ve had the most incredible first couple of days in the trip. I’ve been surprised multiple times and have felt utterly content most of the time. I also have the feeling that I will return here one-day, just maybe…
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